Oct 26, 2016
From staff reports
Ohio University’s Campus Involvement Center has awarded scholarships to three students involved in OHIO’s Collegiate Recovery Community, R.I.S.E. (Recovery to Inspire, Share, and Empower).
The 2016 George Kontogiannis Collegiate Recovery Scholarship, a $2,500 award, was presented to Reed Franta, a senior who is studying communications. Franta is in recovery from an addiction to pain medications which resulted from a serious motorcycle accident six years ago. Prior to entering college, Franta successfully weaned himself off the drugs but said his family was concerned that he would start using again while away at college.
“Knowing this gave me inspiration and motivation to prove them wrong and show them my full potential,” said Franta.
According to Jimmy Stitt, graduate assistant for health promotion, Franta has made substantial progress in a variety of ways throughout his journey. He continues to be a vital member of the Collegiate Recovery Community by inspiring those around him and giving back to the community. Throughout his collegiate career, Franta has become involved with several other student organizations, including POWER/GAMMA and Sober Bobcats. Franta plans to graduate next year with a degree in communications.
The Friends of Recovery Scholarship, in the amount of $1,000, was awarded Ryan Dunham. Two years ago, Dunham noticed that his drinking patterns had become progressively worse. Through the advice and guidance of a friend, he began his journey in recovery and joined R.I.S.E.
Dunham has not had a drop of alcohol since April 15, 2015, and stresses the need for daily maintenance in his sobriety. He has made tremendous strides in terms of his growth through sobriety and recovery, and he credits that to the recovery program he works, said Stitt. Dunham also acknowledges the need for fellowship and sharing experiences with other members of R.I.S.E. Dunham plans to earn a doctoral degree next spring in the Media Arts and Studies Program.
Nadine Sanchara is the recipient of the R.I. S. E. Recovery Scholarship in the amount of $500. A native of Guyana, South America, Sanchara started attending the weekly R.I.S.E. meetings last semester because she had been directly impacted by the addiction of a family member. In 2012, her father passed away as a result of chronic alcoholism. Sanchara states that through her attendance at R.I.S.E meetings she has been able to slowly better understand the disease of addiction and substance abuse. She explains that over time, she has become more open and receptive during the meetings.
“With every meeting I attend, I continue to get more and more comfortable with opening up,” said Sanchara. “It’s really comforting to know that there is a group of people here that understand.”
As a graduate student in the Communications and Development Program, Sanchara hopes to raise more awareness and reduce the stigma surrounding addiction and substance abuse. Through her graduate program, she is working to develop a social media campaign for R.I.S.E. Sanchara is passionate about her work, and is always looking for ways to make a positive impact on others.
The collegiate recovery program is open to all students, faculty and staff who are in recovery, contemplating a life in recovery from addiction and addictive behaviors, or have been impacted by the addiction of a loved one. For more information about the program, contact Ann Addington, assistant director for Health Promotion, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article was provided by Ohio University’s Campus Involvement Center.